Pigments extracted from natural products are widely used for food coloration in Japan. An investigation concerning the photo-mutagenicity and photo-carcinogenicity of frequently used colorants in Japan was performed. Colorants examined were from Laccifer lacca (lac-color), Coccus cacti (cochineal-color), Carthamus tinctorius (carthamus yellow), Gardenia augusta (gardenia yellow and gardenia blue), Monascus anka and Monascus purpureus (monascus red), the skin of Vitis vinifera and Vitis labrusca (grape-skin color), Tamarindus indica (tamarind brown) and Beta vulgaris (beet red). No significant increase in bacterial mutation was found when Salmonella typhimurium TA98, TA100 and TA102 were simultaneously treated with colorants and subjected to UVA irradiation for 30 min. When colorant solutions were subjected to UVA irradiation for 4 h, irradiated solutions containing lac-color became slightly mutagenic toward S.typhimurium TA98 without metabolic activation. A decrease in cell survival resulted when WTK-1 cells were subjected to UVA irradiation for 60 min in the presence of purpurin at 1 mg/ml. Delayed cytotoxicity was also observed following 24 h incubation in fresh medium of samples that were subjected to UVA irradiation for 60 min in the presence of colorant (carthamus yellow, grape-skin color, gardenia blue, cochineal-color, monascus red or purpurin).
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis